The Old West Brick Road

Lee lost Faith the moment she touched her open-toed shoe to the Old West Brick Road. A gibbering fit, a stranger in a sedan. Witnesses saw her run into the Eldridge but she never came out. Not in an hour, a day, a week.

In rare moments of honesty he admitted he lost her before that. When Faith closed her eyes as the shuttle pulled away from the airport he told himself she was tired from the flight. She never traveled well, suffered odd phobias and made peculiar demands. But her eyes remained resolutely closed even after the van stopped at the Oread and the driver swung open the door to wet summer heat wilting clothes and hair and spirit. Lee nudged her shoulder. “We’ve arrived, dear.”

She blinked and stared at the driver’s extended hand as if it were a wolf’s jaws. “The Oread is all new, isn’t it?”

“Yes ma’am.” The driver waited with the serenity of a small town man, places to be but no particular time to be there. “Just opened a few years back.”

“No salvaged cornerstones?” Her fingers wavered just out of his reach. “No antique beds or old portraits?”

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